Surprisingly, for many organizations this is a hard question to answer. In this very tight candidate market it is even more important than ever to take a look at how your organization is perceived by prospective candidates.
An organization needs to develop a marketing and sales plan for their employment opportunities much as they do for the products and services the business sells. If you have an in house marketing person/team and an in house HR/recruiter, the two should be working together to put a plan into place.
One of the most valuable talents a recruiter can have is the ability to effectively market and sell a company’s career opportunities.
Does your company have a good employment brand? Many companies think they do but perhaps a discovery of what your company’s current employment brand is would be a good place to start. Some ways a company can learn about their employment brand is through employee surveys or focus groups, by surveying those who have interviewed with the company in the past and those that have been offered a job with your company but turned you down. Senior staff often thinks they have a great employment brand but the reality of it is that it may be good for them but not for those who work under them and their employees are the ones that matter to the success of attracting top talent.
Other areas that influence an employment brand is: interview experience, financial strength of the company, the company’s community involvement, career growth opportunity, benefits, and more. Take a look at sites like Glassdoor, Linkedin, etc to find any opinions or ratings about your company as an employer. Look at any bad feedback as a gift, feedback provides you with insight as to what needs to be worked on.
Every encounter a potential candidate has with any employee of your company adds or detracts from your employment brand. If a candidate is greeted by a grumpy receptionist or worse yet, ignored or forgotten, this first encounter could drastically harm your employment brand.
When an employee gives notice that they are leaving the company, this is a great opportunity to learn about the employee’s experience with the organization. Ask the employee if they would participate in an exit-interview. An exit interview can reveal both good and bad opinions about their time there, again, any feedback is a gift. You also have to understand that it’s one person’s perception on what it’s like to be an employee there, but also remember that a person’s prospective is their reality so while you may not identify with any poor feedback it’s clear that the perception is there therefore needs to be considered.
Top talent usually knows other top talent. If you have a great employment brand, you’ll probably know it by how many candidate referrals are coming in from your employees. If your employees are happy they have no problem referring and encouraging their previous co-workers, friends and family to apply for open jobs there. If you’re not seeing employee referrals, it’s usually a sure sign that there’s some work to do on your work culture.
Next time you have your management team together or you’re having a conversation with an employee ask the question “why would someone want to work here”?